Whether you are opening a curry house or an Indian restaurant you are onto a winner – the British love a good curry! Most of us indulge in a korma, madras, or vindaloo at the weekend. With that in mind, if you are in the UK, and thinking about to opening your own curry house or Indian restaurant there are a couple of things you need to do before you can open your doors to potential customers. These steps include registering your business, learning the food hygiene laws, applying for food hygiene ratings, and achieving food hygiene certificates. Following rules and regulations show how serious you are about your establishment and the service that you will provide. In this article, we will discuss all the above, and more.
Register your restaurant with the local authority
Firstly, food law requires that you register as self-employed, and register your business if you sell or give away food for free on a regular basis. This needs to be done at least 28 days before you open for business – and thankfully, can be done in a matter of minutes online. Your local authority will then arrange to visit your restaurant for a food hygiene inspection. This will assess whether your food preparation areas and food safety protocols are up to standard. To register online and to find out more information please visit the GOV website. Registration is free, and registration cannot be refused. Do remember, you must register at least 28 days before you open for business.
Food hygiene laws in the UK
Everyone within the food industry should familiarise themselves and their employees with these two food hygiene laws and regulations.
Food Safety Act 1990: This was put in place by the UK Parliament. It states that it is obligatory to treat food intended for human consumption in a controlled and managed way. It is required that all food must comply with food safety requirements and must be of the nature, substance, and quality demanded. It also needs to be described and labelled correctly.
Food Hygiene Regulations 2006: This sets the legal obligations that are on all food-related businesses to ensure food that they prepare and serve is done so in a safe and hygienic manner. These regulations make it an offence for businesses to sell or supply food that is not safe for consumption.
Local authorities are responsible for enforcing food hygiene laws and can inspect your business at any point in the food production and distribution process. Penalties for non-compliance with food safety legislation include unlimited fines under the new sentencing guidelines.
How to gain a Food Hygiene Certificate
You can obtain a food hygiene certificate directly on the course section of our website. Our Level Two Food Hygiene and Safety course is ideal for those thinking of opening their own restaurant. This course builds upon the foundational knowledge of the Level One Food Hygiene and Safety course but goes into further detail regarding the safe handling and preparation of food in the catering industry. It isn’t essential to do the level 1 course, but it is recommended.
Learners will find the course easy to navigate, informative, and readily accessible due to its online nature. The Level Two Food Hygiene and Safety is tailored towards those who have direct and frequent contact with food, and a central role in food preparation and handling.
The course takes roughly 1 – 2 hours to complete and the examination consists of 25 multiple-choice questions which cover each of the three core sections (responsibilities, hazards, and hygiene). Once the exam has been passed, the student will receive their CPD Group accredited digital certificate instantly.
All UK regulations, guidelines, and best practices have been followed to create the course content which works directly to educate learners, allowing them to fulfill their job roles safely and legally. When put into practice, the material in this course can help businesses achieve and sustain a high food hygiene rating for your business. The course costs just £10.00 and is fully accredited by The CPD Group.
Benefits of Holding a Food Hygiene Certificate
Having a food hygiene certificate promotes you as having a conscientious work ethic and gives you the knowledge to back up your experience and level of training – which would look great to prospective clients, customers, potential employers, and fellow staff. Instill confidence in yourself and others whilst learning and developing new and existing skills to help further your career and business. These courses help educate you to prevent foodborne illnesses and outbreaks to protect your customers and your business reputation.
Inspection and ratings
The Food Hygiene Rating Scheme is led by the government in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. It is put in place to make sure that cafes, food stalls, takeaways, restaurants, and more are preparing food in sanitary, and safe conditions – thus protecting the public. Food Hygiene Ratings are scored between 0-5 which we will summarise below.
Food Hygiene Rating 0 – This is the lowest score you can attain. It means improvement is urgent and needs to be carried out immediately. To receive this rating the organisation will have to obtain 50 points or more – the more points, the worse the rating when it comes to food hygiene scores.
Food Hygiene Rating 1 – Another low rating and one which will require improvements as soon as possible. 45-50 points will achieve a rating of 1. Changes will need to be made within the organisation.
Food Hygiene Rating 2 – Receiving this rating means that improvement is needed and just like the previous ratings, staff training is more than likely required, and perhaps an overhaul when it comes to equipment and processes. A score between 35-40 results in a food hygiene rating of 2.
Food Hygiene Rating 3 – A rating of 25-30 achieves a food hygiene rating of 3. This is the bare minimum and is thought of as a satisfactory score by some. Improvements are still recommended but not needed so urgently.
Food Hygiene Rating 4 – A score of 4 is achieved by attaining 20 points in the inspection. This is a great score to have and many businesses are proud to have it. It means they take food hygiene very seriously. That said, there is still room for improvement if the organisation wants to be even better.
Food Hygiene Rating 5 – A hygiene rating of 5. To achieve this illustrious score you need to score between 0-15 points. This is what all food-handling businesses and organisations should be aiming for.
In the UK it is recommended that all food businesses display their food hygiene rating on their premises, in a clear and concise way. That said, some businesses choose not to do so, for one reason or another – leaving their score to the customer’s imagination. Although not advised, it is legal and all food hygiene ratings can be viewed online if a customer would like to look further.